Mainland Chinese stocks were up by the early morning. The Shanghai Composite was up by 1.26% to 3,469.68. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was up about 0.48% to 29,150.75.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei average. Nikkei 225 is trading down 0.04 per cent at 29,671.06 on Monday, while the Australian Index S&P / ASX 200 rose 0.14 per cent to 7,073.71. South Korea’s Kospi was up by 0.03% to 3198.08.
The FTSE MIB climbed up by 0.88% to 24,744.50 In the cash markets, the DAX futures Germany was trading 1.34% higher at 15,459.25. CAC 40 futures in France climbed up by 0.85% to 6,287.60, while the FTSE 100 futures in the U.K. rose by 0.52% to 7,019.41, at the time of writing.
In the U.S. on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.48% at 34,200.27 the S&P 500 was up 0.36% to 4,185.86 and the Nasdaq 100 was up 0.10% at 14,052.76.
In the Forex market, GBPUSD fell 0.37% at 1.3735. The USDJPY was up 0.11% at 108.86. The USDCHF was up 0.21% at 0.9208. EURUSD was up 0.01% at 1.1968, EUR/GBP was up 0.41% at 0.8713, at the time of writing.
In the commodity market, U.S. Gold futures fell 0.16% at $1,777.45. Elsewhere, Silver futures fell 1.00% to $25.843 per ounce, Platinum rose 0.30% at $1,209.90 per ounce, and Palladium was up 0.08% at $2,785.50.
Brent crude oil was down 0.31% to $66.56 barrel while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (CLc1) fell 0.24% at $63.04.
In the Cryptocurrency Markets, BTCUSD is at $56,803 up 2.06%, Ethereum at 2,240.18 up 2.74%, Litecoin at 273.442 up 5.74%, at the time of writing.
TOP STOCKS TO WATCH OUT TODAY:
AstraZeneca down 0.27% at 7380.0, Apple Inc. down 0.25% at $134.16, Amazon up 0.60% at $ 3,399.44, TESLA Inc. up 0.13% at $739.78, Daimler up 2.62% at 77.335., Boeing down 1.17% at $248.18, Unilever down 0.04% at 4164.37.
Fewer than 200,000 businesses in the United States may have failed during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lighter toll than initially feared and one that may have had relatively little impact on unemployment, according to Federal Reserve research.
The figure contrasts with the early forecasts that the pandemic would leave America’s “Main Street” desolate as well as with polls that continue to show large percentages of U.S. small business owners are worried about their survival.
Perhaps 600,000 businesses, most of them small firms, fail in any given year, and U.S. central bank researchers estimated that from March 2020 through February of this year the figure has been perhaps a quarter to a third higher.
That included 100,000 “excess” failures among firms engaged in close-contact services such as barber shops and nail salons, a sector described by the Fed research group as the sector hardest hit by the economic fallout from the pandemic.
While potentially devastating for the owners and employees of those firms, “relative to popular discussion … our results may represent an optimistic update to views about pandemic-related business failure,” the authors wrote.
Offsetting the hit to those services-oriented businesses, they noted, carry-out restaurants, grocery stores and outdoor recreation companies seemed to suffer fewer failures than usual, with the net result being a smaller-than-anticipated blow to the overall economy.
“Many industries have likely seen lower-than-usual exit rates, and exiting businesses do not appear to represent a large share of U.S. employment,” the researchers wrote.
The study was the latest to sound a positive note on an economic recovery that has proceeded faster than expected, with top Fed officials confident that much of the potential permanent damage had been avoided. Earlier research had anticipated widespread business failures due to the pandemic, with 400,000 or more small firms going dark.
Census and other surveys continue to reflect stress among some firms that continue to operate, and the Fed researchers acknowledged that more failures could occur if, for example, banks, landlords and creditors become less flexible with their business tenants as conditions return to normal.
Nor does the study account for the millions of still-lost jobs at surviving firms that cut staff or reduced operations, or for the disproportionate losses felt among racial or ethnic groups over-represented in the most devastated industries.
But it does start to put some scope around one of the potential economic scars from the pandemic, and suggests that small businesses appear to have been both more resilient than anticipated, and were propped up effectively by loans from the Paycheck Protection Program and other federal aid.
Euro zone politicians, courts and policy hawks will pose a stiff challenge this year to the ECB’s resolve to pin down the bloc’s borrowing costs, precisely at a time when higher U.S. Treasury yields are tempting investors away from European markets.
The European Central Bank has held sovereign debt yields low through bond purchases, and recently increased buying in its 1.85 trillion-euro ($2.22 trillion) emergency stimulus scheme, known as PEPP.
And it is no longer battling alone to support the euro economy, as the pandemic induced governments to spend more and to create an 800 billion-euro Recovery Fund, seeded by joint European Union borrowing.
However, an emergency appeal at Germany’s top court has halted the fund’s ratification. The court should decide in the coming weeks on the suit which was brought by five plaintiffs, including the former leader of the far-right Alternative for Germany party.
Given how far Europe’s recovery lags the United States, delaying the fund could mean “economic disaster”, ECB board member Isabel Schnabel has warned.
It is most concerning for poorer southern European countries, which stand to benefit the most from disbursements. Their borrowing costs fell last year as the Recovery Fund deal was seen reducing risks for their economies, but yields have started to edge up on concerns that support for these economies may not come soon enough.
Italy alone could receive a total 250 billion euros from the fund, Credit Suisse estimates.
“(The ECB) is doing enough, but the game is not over,” said Guy Miller, chief market strategist at Zurich Insurance Group . “They have to remain vigilant, and they will have to make sure to continue to fight.”
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